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wood, and fresh water, and in their course took a ship laden with silk and linen, which was the last that they met with on the coast of America.
But being desirous of storing themselves for a long course, they touched, April the 15th, at Guatulco, a Spanish island, where they supplied themselves with provisions, and seized a bushel of rials of silver.
From Guatulco, which lies in 15 deg. 40 min. they stood out to sea, and, without approaching any land, sailed forward, till on the night following, the 3d of June, being then in the latitude of 38 degrees, they were suddenly benumbed with such cold blasts, that they were scarcely able to handle the ropes. This cold increased upon them, as they proceeded, to such a degree, that the sailors were discouraged from mounting upon the deck; nor were the effects of the climate to be imputed to the warmth of the regions to which they had been lately accustomed, for the ropes were stiff with frost, and the meat could scarcely be conveyed warm to the table.
On June 17th they came to anchor in 38 deg. 30 min. when they saw the land naked, and the trees without leaves, and in a short time had
opportunities of observing that the natives of that country were no less sensible of the cold than themselves ; for the next day came a man rowing in his canoe towards the ship, and at a distance from it made a long oration, with very extraordinary gesticulations, and great appearance of vehemence, and a little time afterwards made a second visit in the same manner, and then returning a third time, he presented them, after his harangue was finished, with a kind of crown of black feathers, such as their kings wear upon their heads, and a basket of rushes filled with a particular herb, both which he fastened to a short stick, and threw into the boat; nor could he be prevailed upon to receive any thing in return, though pushed towards him upon a board ; only he took up a hat, which was flung into the water.
Three days afterwards, their ship, having received some damage at sea, was brought nearer to land, that the lading might be taken out. In order to which, the English, who had now learned not too negligently to commit their lives to the mercy of savage nations, raised a kind of fortification with stones, and built their tents within it. All this was not beheld by the inhabitants without the utmost astonishment, which incited them to come down in crowds to the coast, with no other view, as it appeared, than to worship the new divinities that had condescended to touch upon their country.
Drake was far from countenancing their errors, or taking advantage of their weakness to injure or molest them; and therefore, having directed them to lay aside their bows and arrows, he presented them with linen, and other necessaries, of which he showed them the use. They then returned to their habitations, about three quarters of a mile from the English camp, where they made such loud and violent outcries, that they were heard by the English, who found that they still persisted in their first notions, and were paying them their kind of melancholy adoration.
Two days afterwards, they perceived the approach of a far more numerous company, who stopped at the top of a hill which overlooked the English settlement, while one of them made a long oration, at the end of which all the assembly bowed their bodies, and pronounced the syllable Oh with a solemn tone, as by way
way of confirmation of what had been said by the orator.
Then the men, laying down their bows, and leaving the women and children on the top of the hill, came down towards the tents, and seemed transported in the highest degree at the kindness of the general, who received their gifts, and admitted them to his presence. The women at a distance appeared seized with a kind of frenzy, such as that of old among the Pagans in some of their religious ceremonies, and in honour, as it seemed, of their guests, tore their cheeks and bosoms with their nails, and threw themselves upon the stones with their naked bodies till they were covered with blood.
These cruel rites, and mistaken honours, were by no means agreeable to Drake, whose predominant sentiments were notions of piety; and, therefore, not to make that criminal in himself by his concurrence, which, perhaps, ignorance might make guiltless in them, he ordered his whole company to fall upon their knees, and, with their eyes lifted up to heaven, that the savages might observe that their worship was addressed to a Being residing there, they all joined in praying that this harmless and deluded people might be brought to the knowledge of the true religion, and the doctrines of our blessed Saviour ; after which they sung psalms, a performance so pleasing to their wild audience, that in all their visits they generally first accosted them with a request that they would
sing. They then returned all the presents which they had received, and retired.
Three days after this, on June 25, 1579, our general received two ambassadors from the Hioh, or king of the country, who, intending to visit the camp, required that some token might be sent him of friendship and peace; this request was readily complied with, and soon after came the king, attended by a guard of about an hundred tall men, and preceded by an officer of state, who carried a sceptre made of black wood, adorned with chains of a kind of bone or horn, which are marks of the highest honour among them, and having two crowns, made as before, with feathers fastened to it, with a bag of the same herb which was presented to Drake at his first arrival.
Behind him was the king himself, dressed in a coat of cony-skins, with a cawl woven with feathers upon his head, an ornament so much in estimation there, that none but the domesticks of the king are allowed to wear it: his attendants followed him, adorned nearly in the same manner ; and after them came the common people, with baskets plaited so artificially that they held water, in which, by way of sacrifice, they brought roots and fish.
Drake, not lulled into security, ranged his men in order of battle, and waited their approach, who coming nearer stood still while the sceptrebearer made an oration, at the conclusion of which they again came forward to the foot of the hill, and then the sceptre-bearer began a song, which he accompanied with a dance, in both which the men joined, but the women danced without singing. Drake now, distrusting them no longer, admitted them into his fortification, where they continued their song and dance a short time; and then both the king, and some others of the company, made long harangues, in which it appeared, by the rest of their behaviour, that they entreated him to accept of their country, and to take the government of it into his own hands; for the king, with the apparent concurrence of the rest, placed the crown upon his head, graced him with the chains and other signs of authority, and saluted him by the title of Hioh.
The kingdom thus offered, though of no farther value to him than as it furnished him with
present necessaries, Drake thought it not prudent to refuse; and therefore took possession of it in the name of Queen Elizabeth, not without ardent wishes that this acquisition might have been of use to his native country, and that so mild and innocent a people might have been united to the church of Christ.
The kingdom being thus consigned, and the grand affair at an end, the common people left their king and his domesticks, with Drake, and dispersed themselves over the camp; and when they saw any one that pleased them by his appearance more than the rest, they tore their flesh, and vented their outcries as before, in token of reverence and admiration,
They then proceeded to show them their wounds and diseases, in hopes of a miraculous and instantaneous cure; to which the English, to benefit and undeceive them at the same time, applied such remedies as they used on the like occasions,